How to Maintain PMI Certifications with Free Webinar PDUs and Ensure PDUs Are Reported Correctly



Project management is a very important skill because a project forms the basis for grouping a series of tasks and activities with a certain time frame and requiring resources to achieve a defined outcome. Hence, qualified project managers are always in demand in any industry, and project management is a good skill to acquire.

To kickstart your path towards becoming a qualified project manager, you should first register an account at www.pmi.org. PMI (Project Management Institute) is a not-for-profit professional membership association for the project management profession. This means PMI is in charge of certifying new project managers and keeping records of existing ones. The association is also in charge of updating the PMBOK (Project Management Body of Knowledge) which is the set of standard terminologies and guidelines for project managers, as well as the various project management certifications. 

For aspiring project managers, you need to fulfill the requirements of holding at least a secondary degree and completing 23 hours of project management education to take the Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM) certification. For those with more hands-on project management experience, you can opt to take the Project Management Professional (PMP) certification, which has slightly more stringent requirements on education and experience. From there, you can move on to higher tiers of the certification ladder to showcase your skills in project management.

Once you have earned your project management certification with PMI, you would then get acquainted with another term called PDUs (short for Professional Development Units) which is required as part of maintaining and renewing your Project Management credentials. 

PDUs are one-hour blocks of time doing something "project management", by learning, teaching, or volunteering. Different certification requires different PDUs. For example, if you are PMP-certified, then you need to earn 60 hours of PDU over 3 years. More on what are PDUs here and ways to earn them here.

You probably would have also realized that your PMI membership automatically gives you free access to ProjectManagement.com which has lots of on-demand webinars that you can use to earn your PDUs. If not, now you know :)

Both PMI.org and ProjectManagement.com use the same credentials, so you do not need to register another account when using the latter. This post is just to highlight a couple of important things to take note of, or issues you may run into when using ProjectManagement.com.




First and foremost is ProjectManagement.com advises viewers to complete the webinar from start to finish to have the view counted for PDU. In my own experience, the system will detect if your active window is not on the webinar, i.e. no browsing using another tab or running another application while letting the video run in the background. Each webinar is about an hour-long, so I would suggest just setting aside an hour block at a time to finish the entire video.

Once you are done with the video, the PDU will be reported automatically by the system to PMI. ProjectManagement.com advises that processing will take about 48-72 hours. You should also receive email notifications when they are processed and completed. In my experience, for various reasons, sometimes the system will not detect the view and hence it does not get reported. Because there are no obvious immediate indications, you will not know if the view has been counted.

So what I usually do is once I finish a webinar, go to the top right corner which will have my name and a drop-down list. Click on the drop-down and the first item should be "Account". Hover over it, right-click and choose to open in a new tab. This is important because you do not want to browse away from the page that you just finished the webinar.

Picture showing where to locate the status of webinar in ProjectManagement.com
How to check PDU status in ProjectManagement.com

In the new tab, you will be on the "My Account" page. Expand on the section with "PDUS AWARDED" and you should be able to see the title of the webinar you just finished listed there. Once you see it here, you can rest assured that the system has detected the view properly. Webinars viewed previously and PDUs awarded successfully will have "Processed" status. If you did not complete the webinar or browsed away during the video, you will probably see X% completed. For such cases, it is difficult to determine where exactly should you continue off from, so I would suggest that you either launch the webinar one more time or just go for another one.

If you do not see the webinar title listed, ensure that you are still login to the website. Login again if you are not and reload the My Account page to see if the view has been updated. If you still do not see it, one last option would be to go back to the webinar tab that you left off above and do a reload on that page. Hopefully, the system will recognize the view.

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